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Azotea pleads guilty to killing Sullivan County couple, will serve life in prison

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A murder trial has taken a surprising turn in Elizabethton. Eric Azotea pleaded guilty to the brutal 2015 killing of a Sullivan County couple Wednesday morning.

Opening arguments were Tuesday when the prosecution said Azotea made multiple statements to investigators in which he claimed responsibility for the killings of Amber Terrell and Art Gibson, Jr.

Police said Azotea admitted stabbing Gibson and Terrell to death at his home on Woodland Drive in the Pinecrest community of Carter County and then moving their bodies to a building on his property. He kept their bodies hidden for about two days. Then, he dismembered their corpses and disposed of them in a burn pit on his property.

Azotea was facing the death penalty, but the plea deal will have him spend the rest of his life behind bars.

News 5’s John Engel is in court and will have more coming up on News 5.

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